Jill was amazed.  Her family knew about her lying, manipulative, backstabbing, rage-aholic middle daughter but so many seemed to take her side.

That daughter was narcissistic and entitled.  Jill’s family was co-dependent and enabling.

They’d turn on Jill and encourage her to forgive, to rise above and to not make waves.  They’d say Jill was being too sensitive or Jill wasn’t perfect either or Jill knew how her daughter was so she should just do whatever her daughter wanted.  They’d say if only Jill was nicer, her daughter would be fine.  Jill should feel guilty for making her daughter angry.  Jill should love and forgive as long as she lived.  They always wanted Jill to change and let her daughter get away with it.

Those are among the seven techniques that do not stop bullies.

Why didn’t anyone stand up and defend Jill from her daughter’s bullying and abuse?

  1. Sometimes, especially with covert bullies, other people simply are fooled.  But that’s not the case in Jill’s family.
  2. Sometimes people are afraid that if Jill makes a big issue, it will split the family into warring camps.  Since they’re not being harmed, they don’t want the family split.  The 20th C provided lots of examples of people looking the other way until it was too late.
  3. Sometimes people put justice and standards aside when they might have to do something that makes them uncomfortable and shines a light on them.  Most people won’t stand up when they’re afraid of Jill’s daughter’s wrath directed at them.
  4. Sometimes people simply side with the winner.  Jill’s daughter looked like she had the power because Jill didn’t know how to defend herself effectively.  As soon as Jill learns, the ground will shift and some people will start allying with her.
  5. Usually people see who’s the most stubborn and intransigent.  They think they’ll never budge a relentless attacker so they give in and try to change the more reasonable person.  They want the nicer person to compromise.  They hope Jill’s appeasement will buy some peace and quiet, and eventually, Jill’s daughter will get enough control and power and stop throwing fits.

I see these last three reasons operating most of the time.

I’ve seen people verbally beaten down by couples’ therapists and divorce mediators because they’re the more reasonable person.  The therapist or mediator assumes that the angriest person must have been offended by some action on the part of the reasonable person and they want the reasonable person to give in.

At work, I’ve seen many people pile on and mob innocent targets.  People want to be part of the power-club so they attack the weakling or outcast.

Jill got over her guilt and decided she would honor her values about good behavior, decency and justice as more important than loyalty to a daughter who was ripping her flesh apart and a family who was co-dependent and enabling.  When Jill started standing up, everything shifted in the family.  Jill took power by tactics that were sometimes overt and sometimes covert to catch her daughter in lies and isolate her.

Of course, there are many complications depending on your situationThe best way to learn how to take power in your life and to be the person you want to be is to hire Dr. Ben for personalized coaching and counseling so you can:

  1. Develop the strength, courage, will and determination to be and to act your best resolutely, diligently and effectively.
  2. Develop a plan and master the skills necessary to create the life your spirit has always hungered for.

Since all tactics depend on the situation, call me at 1-877-8Bullies for expert counseling and coaching by phone or Skype.

AuthorBen Leichtling